Hear first hand from Cali Lewis how to start podcasting. Learn from her experiences and gather valuable tips for creating a successful podcast. Also learn about various technology promotion endeavors and how you might adapt them to promote library services.
Cali Lewis, podcaster, GeekBrief.TV
Unfortunately Cali had the time written down wrong for her presentation. The coordinators knew she had checked in, but couldn’t find her and didn’t have her phone number so they told those of us waiting that it was canceled. I went to get a coffee and came back to see if she had turned up, which she had. You can read Cali’s apology on her site and see it again on her show. I’ve been watching her show now for about a year now and it was a delight to meet her. She obviously sincerely felt terrible for the mistake. I hope that she’s able to do something with the library world in the future, whether it’s another TLA event, a special podcast of her presentation, or an interview on one of the library podcasts mentioned below.
The presentation was structured around 5 new media tools that are useful for libraries.
Since I had left and come back I missed the beginning of her presentation where she talked about delicious, but I’m a big fan of delicious and have given a presentation on it for ACC faculty and staff at our tech trends day. You can see my presentation, but there’s not much too it. It was a very hands on session. You can also check out my delicious links about social bookmarking.
When I walked in Cali was telling us how the Houston library is using Twitter. She explained what Twitter is, that it’s for short messages, in the moment. You can also send direct messages in twitter. The standard @reply is public, but direct messages are private. She also explained how you can use Twitter as a content management system, that there is a badge/widget for dynamic updating. You can tweet updates – like story time is coming up, then that message goes straight to the homepage rather than having to ask your webmaster to update the page with each little notice.
Cali’s next item for us was blogging. Blogging allows us to embrace the concept of naked conversations. She said there’s a book explaining the concept and agreed that it was the same as transparency which is the term that has been bouncing around library world and that you may have heard me spouting off about – the idea of being open and involved.
After that was podcasting – audio or video that is distributed online. She emphasized that you’re better off with an external mic – either headset or usb. The snowball mic is great quality as is the smaller snowflake. She mentioned the Uncontrolled Vocabulary podcast which is a round table style. (There’s also the Library 2.0 Gang.) She suggested that you have a format – people should know what to expect, they’re deciding to listen to a specific thing. Shorter is better. 20 minutes tops is a great area to be in, or even 5-10 minutes. You’ll need recording software. Castblaster was her recommendation. It costs $50 but is more user friendly than the free alternatives. You don’t need to know anything, it walks you through all the steps. It has only simple editing and also walks you through publishing. Audacity is her recommended free alternative, but it’s a little more complicated. Podshow.com is a free host. Cali has a walk through on her site. You’ll also want to make sure you’re listed in the iTunes directory because it gives you a link to automatically subscribe and have it sent to you.
The last tool Cali mentioned was ustream.tv which is a site that provides live streaming video. Libraries could use it to broadcast events. You set up a free account and of course test ahead of time. One librarian read The Polar Express. It has a fairly simple set up, you choose your audio and video source. It has a chat room feature, so you’ll want to have someone who’s there at the event to monitor the chat room and answer questions as people stop by. The page is customizable and you can record it. You can also name it and tag it. You could also use it for meetings since you can password protect them.
Cali mentioned that the University of Buffalo is doing some cool things and we talked about uses of podcasting such as student book reviews and children’s story time.
Cali’s presentation notes and links are available at www.geekbrief.tv/contact/tla